All for One
Remember the joy we had when we repeated the words of Alexandre Dumas' The Three Musketeers: “All for one and one for all?” I think our world would be so
much better if we could pull those words back up and make them ones to live by. Lives have been torn apart by division and cruelty, illness and hate. Hate blinds us and keeps us from seeing how we hurt ourselves with all the negative energy that we're spewing. I wonder how we could be if we truly practiced "all for one and one for all." Isn't that what our country was founded on? Didn't we decide as a nation that we wanted all of us to be free? Yes, we've made mistakes along the way, however, I think if we could come back to that one principle we could bring lightness instead of dark. We could express kindness instead of meanness. We could give a smile or a small salute instead of the wrong kind of finger. So, what does it take to be all for one and one for all? How do we get there?
Let's look at the word all. Webster says it’s: “the whole amount, quantity, or extent; of every member or individual component of.” Remember the Venn diagrams from elementary school math? Those give us a good picture of what all represent. It's one circle encompassed by another circle so there truly is no distinction. Aren't we all human? Don't we all need oxygen to breathe? Don't we all bleed the same? (Borrowed from Mandisa.) Straight, gay, purple, pink, brown what's different about us is not what really matters. It is what is the same.
One. That's a different and yet similar word. One implies no division. Going back to our Venn diagram, it's again one circle encompassing another. There are no subgroups in one. There's unity, care, and compassion. We matter to ourselves and to one another.
Putting it all together, the dictionary phrase (again using our friend Webster) says “All for One & One for All” is “A phrase that emphasizes solidarity and support within a group; the group will support its members and its members will support the group.” I think we can be more solid by listening before we speak. We can support one another vs. taking potshots. We can remember that we are “One Nation” with different yet harmonizing voices. Know that this one is for all of you.